Sunday, November 22, 2009

Iran wants its "air defense" missiles and it wants them now

But Russia isn't delivering at the moment:
Defense Minister Ahmad Vahidi said on Sunday that Iran is asking Russia to fulfill its commitments in delivering S-300 air defense missiles to Iran.

The S-300 system, which can track targets and fire at aircraft 120 kilometers (75 miles) away, features high jamming immunity and is able to simultaneously engage up to 100 targets.

The truck-mounted S-300PMU1, known in the West as the SA-20, can shoot down cruise missiles and aircraft. It can fire at targets up to 150 km (90 miles) away and travel at more than two km per second.

Iran says Russia should have delivered the air defense system some six months ago and the delay is apparently the result of Western pressure.
They don't want you to think that this leaves them with any gaps in their defenses, however. According to Fars, "Commander Stresses Iran's Ability to Shoot Down Israel's F15, F16 Fighters":
A senior commander of the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) here on Sunday warned of Tehran's crushing response to any potential attack on the country, stating that Iran enjoys the required defensive capability to bring down Israel's advanced military aircrafts.

"Be sure that in case of any aggression, the Zionists' F15 and F16 aircrafts will be trapped by our air defense and will be destroyed," Commander of the IRGC Aerospace Force Brigadier General Amir Ali Hajizadeh said.

"And if one of their aircraft manages to escape Iran's air defense - before it can land - the bases from which these aircraft have taken off will be struck by our destructive ground-to-ground missiles," the Commander said in a reaction to Israelis growing war rhetoric against Iran's peaceful nuclear program.

"The Zionists may initiate such a war, but undoubtedly its end will depend on our will," Hajizadeh noted. [...]
And they'll attack more than just "bases." A PressTV article proclaims "If attacked, Iran will target Tel Aviv":
A senior IRGC official warns that Iranian missiles will be on their marks to target the very heart of Tel Aviv in the event of a military attack on the Islamic Republic.

“If the enemy tries its luck and fires a missile into Iran, our ballistic missiles would zero in on Tel Aviv before the dust settles on the attack,” said Mojtaba Zolnour, the representative of the Leader of the Islamic Revolution, Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei, in the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC). [...]
It is interesting that none of this stresses what Western analysts stress: Iran's efforts to make the nuclear facilities themselves less vulnerable. The Fars article does quote an American think tank study that doubts that a military strike will do much, but without giving a reason why it wouldn't. I guess the home crowd doesn't want to hear that even if there is widespread destruction the nukes will be safe.

Crossposted on Soccer Dad

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